Canada vs Australia odds and betting statistics
Canada vs Australia recommended bets
Canada vs Australia match preview
When the draw was made, pretty much everyone would’ve predicted that these two, as Olympic Gold Medalists and co-hosts, would be the pair advancing to the round of 16.
However, in all likelihood, one of the two will be crashing out come full time in Melbourne.
As hosts, Australia came into this campaign with sky-high expectations, but this tournament certainly has not gone to plan.
On the World Cup’s opening night, despite the absence of star player Sam Kerr, the Matlidas battled to a 1-0 victory over Ireland, courtesy of Steph Catley’s penalty at Sydney Olympic Stadium.
Ahead of their second game against Nigeria in Brisbane, most expected Tony Gustavsson’s side to pick up another win that would book their place in the last 16.
Despite a nervy start to the game, it was all going to plan when, in the first minute of stoppage time, Emily van Egmond fired her team in front, connecting with Caitlin Foord’s cut-back.
However, in the sixth minute if injury time, Nigeria hit back with an equaliser, stunning Lang Park into silence.
Well, it then went from bad to worse for the home crowd, with Nigeria on target not once but twice just after the hour mark, with the mood turning mutinous from the large Aussie support.
Towards the end, Australia threw the kitchen sink at their African opponents, with Alanna Kennedy eventually halving the deficit via a towering header, but it proved to be too little too late.
This 3-2 defeat actually saw the hosts drop down to third in the group, now in serious danger of crashing out in the group phase for the first time in two decades.
Canada meantime also found Nigeria tough opponents in their opener, held to a goalless draw in Victoria, with Christine Sinclair denied her big moment, seeing a penalty saved.
Five days later, Bev Priestman’s side did manage to leap into first place of Group B, courtesy of a comeback victory over Republic of Ireland in the pouring rain at Perth Rectangular Stadium.
Having conceded directly from a corner, an own goal got the Canucks back on level terms deep into first half injury time; Julia Grosso’s cross deflected in.
Then, mere moments after the interval, Adriana Leon poked home the decisive go-ahead goal, getting on the end of Sophie Schmidt’s superb through-ball.
So, with four points to their name, les Rouges are now top of this group, needing just a draw to get through, a result that would see Australia eliminated, unless Ireland hammer Nigeria simultaneously.
Baring that, this game is simply must win for the Matildas, or they’ll crash out in the group phase of a tournament they were hopeful of winning before a ball was kicked Down Under.
This is, without doubt, the biggest match of this World Cup so far, so which one of these two juggernauts will suffer a disastrous group phase exit at Melbourne Rectangular Stadium?
Canada team news
Christine Sinclair came off the bench at half time against Ireland, with this the first time Canada had started a World Cup match without here since 1999, ending a sequence of 22 matches.
Thus, the 40 year old will return up front here, desperate to become the first player, male or female, to score at six different World Cups.
Jessie Fleming sat out les Rouges’ opener against Nigeria with a knock, but returned on Wednesday, which was a major boost.
Sophie Schmidt, like Sinclair, changed the game as a half time substitute last time out, but could remain on the bench, with Quinn, Fleming and Julia Grosso a very strong midfield trio.
Predicted XI (4-3-3): Sheridan; Lawrence, Gilles, Buchanan, Riviere; Quinn, Fleming, Grosso; Huitema, Leon, Sinclair.
Australia teams news
Super star striker Sam Kerr, who’s possibly the best attacker in the world, is yet to feature at this tournament due to an injury sustained in training.
Even if Kerr isn’t 100% ready to go, she’ll surely feature here in some capacity, possibly from the start, given her team’s precarious position; there’s no point saving her for the knockout stages if they eliminated here!
More broadly, the Matildas have had no luck with injuries, given that defender Aivi Luik as well as strikers Mary Fowler and Kyah Simon also sat out the Nigeria defeat, and it’s unknown if any of them will return here.
Predicted XI (4-4-2): Arnold; Carpenter, Hunt, Kennedy, Catley; Cooney-Cross, Gorry, Raso, Vine; Foord, Kerr.